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Thread: Good sci-fi novels...

  1. #1 Good sci-fi novels... 
    Forum Ph.D. william's Avatar
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    Hi everyone,
    I have read some sci-fi novels that I felt were really good, and I have read others where I felt it was a total waste of time.

    So I'm always on the lookout for good novels and on guard to stay away from losers.

    What are some that you would recommend?

    If you find yourself typing a long list, label which in that list are your absolute favorites.

    Thanks,
    wm


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  3. #2  
    Forum Isotope Zelos's Avatar
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    id recoment "The gods themselves"
    its about a machine that exchanges matter between 2 universes with different strong nuclear force wich causes some problems


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    I just got finished with the foundation series and those were all really good reads, though while I dont know if they are sci-fi but they are definently close if not, Id recomend you read every book written by Vonnegut or Cormier they are all awesome, and this is coming from a pretty harsh critic.
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    i have a book shelf comprising mainly of Arthur C. clark novels and most of them were throughly enjoyable novels, in particular 'the light of other days', the space oddysey series and 'times eye'.
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  6. #5  
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    The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton it's a pretty short book but it's really interesting.
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  7. #6  
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    what is it about?
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

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  8. #7  
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    For a real corker of a book - riveting fiction all the way through, there is one and only one piece to read it is called 'A brief history of time' by a guy called Stephen Hawking.
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  9. #8  
    Forum Isotope Zelos's Avatar
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    got that book. its a science book, not fiction.
    Stephen hawking is one of the greatest scientists who have worked with gravity after einstein
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

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  10. #9  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelos
    got that book. its a science book, not fiction.
    Stephen hawking is one of the greatest scientists who have worked with gravity after einstein
    No no no! Principia Mathematica was non-fiction. Hawking writes fiction under the guise of 'non-fiction' - Go and check out 'Hawking Radiation' or to give it it's real name, "How I fudged a half-assed theory to fit by making things out of thin air".
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  11. #10  
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    hawking radiation is not aganist any laws. it have laws supporting it. Stephen hawking isnt something to laugh about just since he is rather new to your world.
    Stephen hawking might be crippled but his mind is working.
    I am zelos. Destroyer of planets, exterminator of life, conquerer of worlds. I have come to rule this uiniverse. And there is nothing u pathetic biengs can do to stop me

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  12. #11  
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    I admire Stephen for the fact that he defies the disease which tries to cripple him. When I speak of his abilities as a theoretical physicist I ignore his medical condition I see him as a complete person. I consider some of his theories to be absurd. I do not believe that Hawking radiation will prove true. He holds the same position in physics as did Sir Isaac Newton.

    As to Hawking Radiation, the theory suggests that it cannot be detected as the temperature is so low it would be lost in background radiation, Degrees (Kelvin) times Ten to the Minus 8 /Number of solar masses. So we are talking about a temperature of a few nano degrees for a very small black hole or less for a larger one. So no chance of proving or disproving it with a thermometer...

    So will a black hole ever end? Well that's something like 7.0 *10^71 * number of solar masses. in seconds, Well the whole Universe is only something like 5.0 * 10^17 seconds old so that's pushed that out.

    My point is that, if it is impossible to prove/disprove a theory it should not be taken for granted. (I accept my memory of the two formula may not be entirely accurate but they are both 'in the order of'). There is not a single iota of evidence to suggest he is right. There is no observable phenomina to explain. If black holes exist then why should they leak away? - and if they do why not through EM waves of higher energy than Gamma as yet undetectable. I find Hawking Radiation and 'GOD' to be equal in terms of proving or disproving them.
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  13. #12  
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    Quote Originally Posted by billco
    My point is that, if it is impossible to prove/disprove a theory it should not be taken for granted. .
    It should certainly not be granted the honour of referring to it as a theory.
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  14. #13  
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    I'm confused - are you saying Hawking Radiation isn't a valid scientific theory, Ophiolite?
    "It is comparatively easy to make clever guesses; indeed there are theorems, like 'Goldbach's Theorem' which have never been proved and which any fool could have guessed." G.H. Hardy, Fourier Series, 1943
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  15. #14  
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    One of my favorite sci-fi novels is The Practice Effect by David Brin. It's about a world where entropy has been reversed and the more objects are used the more efficient they become. Startide Rising is another good Brin novel.

    I liked the Ringworld series by Larry Niven. Robert L. Forward wrote some interesting books about life on neutron stars, the first is called Dragons Egg.

    The Fountains of Paradise is a good novel by Arthur C. Clarke. It's about the construction of a space elevator.
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  16. #15  
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    Well...
    I like many of the classic sci-fi novels, such as '1984' and 'Fahrenheit 451.'

    Really shouldn't do this...but...
    Have you looked here?
    www.adventurebooksofseattle.com

    Before you go there, you should probably check out the slideshow, first. Live a little and turn up the speakers:

    http://photoshow.comcast.net/adventurebooks 8)
    'Don't give up reaching for the stars...
    just build yourself a bigger ladder.'
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  17. #16  
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    Charles Sheffield. In particular, "Tomorrow and Tomorrow," which I THINK Hollywood recently ripped off to make The Fountain (I'm not sure... I haven't seen the movie).

    ACC is definitely good, too, though I doubt there's many people here who haven't read his stuff so I don't know why I bother to mention him. As for Asimov, I currently prefer his shorter stuff and nonfiction. Heinlein I think has balls. And I guess that's my assessment of the Big Three in a nutshell.

    But the Time Traveler's Wife? It's probably hard to classify as hard science fiction (what with "chrono-displacement disorder" being a genetic disease and all), but I have to say it was extremely entertaining.
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  18. #17  
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    "Stand on Zanzibar" by John Brunner is pretty good. It may not count as "hard-s.f" but it is an enjoyable read.
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  19. #18  
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    The Reality Disfunction is a good book
    Come see some of my art work at http://nevyn-pendragon.deviantart.com/
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  20. #19 RAMA 
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    i recommend "rendezvous with rama" series (all four book) by author c clerk. i has inspired me than anything had ever done.
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  21. #20  
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    Eric Frank Russell's "And then there were none"
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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  22. #21  
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    By Ben Bova
    Mars
    Return to Mars

    Isaac Asimov
    Any of the Robot novels
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    Ben Bova has good plots but his novels are diminished by cliche characters. I do, however, enjoy his books.
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  24. #23  
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    Robert Silverberg, Clifford Simac, ASIMOV, SAGAN, Ian Watson, Iain M Banks, etc OH and Douglas Adams (More comedy that sci fi, but i don't care)
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  25. #24  
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    Ender's Game by Orsen Scott Card and the whole series that goes with it.
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  26. #25  
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    does anyone know of a good site where i can get some culture novels? i read player of games and the one where an anomoly is connected to the energy grid.
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  27. #26 Re: RAMA 
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    Quote Originally Posted by pulasthi
    i recommend "rendezvous with rama" series (all four book) by author c clerk. i has inspired me than anything had ever done.
    Have to agree with you on that one. Definitely the best trilogy (not counting the first one) I have ever read (about 5 times I might add :-D )
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  28. #27 Re: RAMA 
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    Quote Originally Posted by pulasthi
    i recommend "rendezvous with rama" series (all four book) by author c clerk. i has inspired me than anything had ever done.
    I'd give Rendezvous an A plus. Great stuff. Rama II gets a D minus... Blah...all the cliche characters pulled out of the hat. That turned me off reading the next one. Clarke is best when he sticks to technology and science.

    I prefer his short stories to his novels (other than Rendezvous)
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  29. #28 Re: RAMA 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    Quote Originally Posted by pulasthi
    i recommend "rendezvous with rama" series (all four book) by author c clerk. i has inspired me than anything had ever done.
    I'd give Rendezvous an A plus. Great stuff. Rama II gets a D minus... Blah...all the cliche characters pulled out of the hat. That turned me off reading the next one. Clarke is best when he sticks to technology and science.

    I prefer his short stories to his novels (other than Rendezvous)
    Well, I think it's fair to let you know that the end of Rama revealed is of the finest stuff Clarke has written. That is, if you can apologyze him for being humanist. Although the series is not of my top favorites, it certainly haves one of my top favorite ends ever.

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  30. #29  
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    Three of my most favorite books are the Xenogenesis trilogy (Dawn, Adulthood Rites, and Imago) by Octavia Butler. Mostly because they're very different than a lot of sci fi out there, and I'm always try to find something with a new feel. I'm also really big on interesting and complex characters, which are definitely present in these books.

    As a warning, though, I think some people might find them a little disturbing. But I thought they were fascinating.

    Oh, and I would also recommend The Dispossessed by Ursula K. Le Guin. But I think it's kind of girly - lots of girls love this book, in my experience, and I'm obviously no exception. There's a lot of emotional investigation of the characters, I think that's why.
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  31. #30  
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    The foundation series was good. right now i'm reading Nightfall by Asimov. I enjoyed Fahrenheit 451 and 1984. One book i read that was a little racy at time was Freeware. It was sort of unique though.
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  32. #31  
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    I forgot to add Philip K. Dick.
    If the stars should appear but one night every thousand years how man would marvel and stare.
    ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
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  33. #32  
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    a few of my favorite books are written by Phillip Jose Famer, and Stephan Baxter.

    Farmers:
    To Your Scatter Bodies Go
    The Fabulous Riverboat
    The Dark Design
    The Magic Labyrinth
    The Gods of Riverworld

    Takes place on a "Riverworld," a planet that has been transformed for the purpose of resurrecting everyone who ever lived, minus a few, such as children who died before the age of five. Various characters have adventures, and some finally end up reaching the control center of the beings who created the Riverworld. Another set of Farmers that I like is the Dayworld series. Takes place in the future, where each person only lives one day per week, and is "stoned" the rest of the time, which is a form of animation suspension. Both are great series.

    The ones by Baxter are Manifold:Space, Manifold:Time, and Manifold:Phase. I like these because they are science fiction, but deal with events that could potentially happen, and because any science they use has a actual basis, its not just something made up for the sake of convenience
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  34. #33  
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    This site:

    http://uplink.space.com/ubbthreads.php?Cat=

    And scroll down to the Science Fiction forum. Might inspire some keeners on some fiction choices, discussion.
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  35. #34  
    Forum Freshman Lothuian's Avatar
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    I'll have to check that out Tavis, sounds like a good read.
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  36. #35  
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    Quote Originally Posted by TavisC
    a few of my favorite books are written by Phillip Jose Famer, and Stephan Baxter.

    The ones by Baxter are Manifold:Space, Manifold:Time, and Manifold:Phase. I like these because they are science fiction, but deal with events that could potentially happen, and because any science they use has a actual basis, its not just something made up for the sake of convenience
    Phillip Jose Farmer's Riverworld novels are of course legend. But one of my favorite Farmer books is The Unreasoning Mask in which he wrote that the fabric of the universe shrieks when the Bolg appears, a monstrosity like something out of Star Trek's "Immunity Syndrome" episode. His protagonist goes on a tortuous starship mission, with a mutinous crew at that, to save everyone in the Universe from this horrific threat. Truly a disturbing story cut out of a bolt of whole cloth.

    In regards to science fiction novels based on reality, have you ever read a book called Sunstroke (Ace Books, NY) by David Kagan? His book depicts the deployment and operation of Solsat X-1, a giant satellite that harnesses sunlight in space and beams it down to Earth in the form of intense microwaves for instant conversion into electricity. The story involves some unforeseen and most devastating results. Sort of like placing the environment into a gigantic microwave oven set on high, with many surprises along the way.

    News agencies in the U.S. have been recently writing and posting articles about microwaving "the power from above" from satellites in geosynchronous orbit to Earth. If all goes well, these solsats could supply entire cities with enormous amounts of power, and at the same time be utilized as space-based weapons systems. Kagan predicted all this in Sunstroke. You may wish to check his novel out.
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  37. #36 david weber 
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    The Honor Harrington series by David Weber is ver good
    Freehold by Michael Z. Williamson is very good as well.
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  38. #37  
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    I can't believe no one has mentioned Heinlein's A Stranger in a Strange World, it was the first science fiction novel to be a best seller.

    I like Bradburry's classics like the Martian Chronicles.
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  39. #38  
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    Ringworld by Larry niven
    there are 4 in total all amazing, but the first is by far the best.

    set in the far future, when an intelegent speceis dubbed the 'peirsons puppeteers' discover an ancient ringworld, clearly created by some far supirior race. they send a crew of four to make first contact, two humans, a puppeteer, and a Kzin.
    absolutely brilliant series with so many twists and turns, nothing is as you expect.
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  40. #39  
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    This topic is all about personal taste, of course but we all like to share our opinion so . . .

    I suggest:

    Michael P. Kube-McDowell's trilogy Enigma, Empery, Emprise

    John Birmingham's trilogy about an international naval battle group from the year 2040 propelled back in time to 1942

    Anything by Iain Banks, David Drake, William Gibson, Larry Niven, Bruce Sterling
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  41. #40  
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    If you happen to be an English-speaking human adult the best Science Fiction novel that you can read is "The Reefs of Earth" by R.A. Lafferty.

    Afterwards (and only afterwards) the best novel of any kind that you can read will be "The Devil is Dead" by R.A. Lafferty.

    And then, if you are a thinker, you will have become addicted.
    Lucky you, five more great novels and over a hundred great short stories (excluding one or two bad ones) by R.A. Lafferty await your pleasure.

    I envy you.
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  42. #41  
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    Recentely (which is about how long he has published science fiction) I have found Richard Morgan to be a good read when I don't want to think
    sorry I was gone so long, there are just to many undereducated people here I did not want to add to the problem but I am going to anyway
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  43. #42  
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    Alastair Reynolds.

    The Revelation Space semi-series is mind-numbing. Shows a future when when man spreads out into space nothing but the remains of other species are found due to a race of machine which are bent on keeping life on there own planets in order to save life from some long-forgotten disaster.

    Century Rain is another of his dealing with a future where earth is destroyed by runaway nano-tech, leaving the remnants of humanity split between technological conservatism and extremism. As a plot twist they find a copy of 1950's earth at the end of wormhole system left behind by an ancient society.

    House of Suns is set 5 billion years in the future. Yeah. And while they haven't actually evolved completely out of existence, they've engineered themselves into a myriad of shapes and designs, with the only society to survive more than a few hundred thousand years are isolated clones (numbering in the thousands) of individual people who spread themselves out as far as possible.

    And Stephen Baxter (Manifold:Time Manifold:Space) Same characters in each book, but going through entirely different sets of events.

    Another amazing read is Richard Morgan and the takeshi kovacs series. Altered Carbon, Broken Angels, are amazing. Human consciousness contained in a metal nugget the size of a cigarette butt. At death it's removed and re-implanted in a new body. Takes place following a top-end mercenary around.

    Black Man by Richard Morgan is also amazing. Set a little bit ahead in time, following the main character, a gen-engineered Alpha Male as he helps the goverment wipe the rest of his kind out.
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  44. #43  
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    I don't know what you like to read about, but personally I recently read a novel called "The Cobra Event" by Richard Preston. It's kinda weird and visualizing what these people are doing... it gets so... detailed. Try reading it. It's about 7-10$ at bookstores.
    I don't want to learn, but hell, I have to.
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  45. #44  
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    Ive read The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells. 8)
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  46. #45  
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    I have a site for reviewing SF books. HERE it is. Feel free to look around, and if you care to ask I will review books and post the review for you.
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  47. #46  
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    david bears "eon" is pretty good.

    Events in Eon take place in the early 21st century, when the USA and Russia are on the verge of nuclear war. In that tense political climate, a 300 km asteroid appears within the solar system following an unusual supernova, and moves into a highly eccentric Near-Earth orbit.
    soon they figure out that it is man made ship. 8)
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    I would reccommend anything by Isaac Asimov. The man wrote so much -- not only did he produce the excellent Foundation series, but he wrote several other series (Empire and Robots) and more short-story collections than I care to list. Many of his short-story collections are science-fiction. I don't know of many outside of the "Black Widower" series that aren't, actually. I daresay Asimov is my favorite author.

    Sagan's Contact was interesting for me, although I prefer his nonfiction.
    This Week in Science] |Let Me Be Frank... | The Skeptic's Guide to the Universe

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  49. #48 E.E. Doc Smith and Fred Saberhagen 
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    I read through all titles and many of the posts to this group. I have read most all the authors mentioned and very much liked about 80 percent of them. But I did not see any mention of E.E. Doc Smith who wrote the Skylark series and the Lensman series. Easy reading very hard to put down once started. If you have not read these I highly recommend them. Next I did not see Fred Saberhagen mentioned, his Berserker books were outstanding.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Supernothing
    Ender's Game by Orsen Scott Card and the whole series that goes with it.
    I agree. The first book (Ender's Game) is definitely a younger read (the highschool curriculum where I come from actually includes this novel for grade 9 English courses), but the subsequent books are much more 'adult'. My personal favourite is Xenocide.
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  51. #50  
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    Some that have not been mentioned:

    Mission of Gravity
    Needle
    Iceworld
    by Hal Clement.

    Code of the Lifemaker
    The Proteus Operation
    by James P. Hogan

    The Voyage of the Space Beagle
    by A.E. van Vogt

    Any of the "Dream Park" Novels
    by Larry Niven and Steven Barnes.

    Icerigger
    by Alan Dean Foster

    Gateway
    by Frederick Pohl

    The Moon is a Harsh Mistress
    by Robert Heinlein

    The "Sector General" stories
    by James White

    Not high quality SF, but a bit of a fun read:

    Ismael
    by Barbara Hambly
    A Star Trek novel in which Spock is accidentally transported to Seattle of the 1860's. The kicker is that it is the Seattle of "Here Comes the Brides", a TV series which aired around the same time as Star Trek and starred Mark Lenard, who also played Spock's father in Star Trek.
    "Men are apt to mistake the strength of their feelings for the strength of their argument.
    The heated mind resents the chill touch & relentless scrutiny of logic"-W.E. Gladstone


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  52. #51  
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    I have read so many science fiction books It's really difficult to name a favorite but John Varley's Gaen trilogy, Titan, Wizard, and Demon are in my top ten for sure.

    The first book is at first a little bit slow as it starts out the first manned probe to Saturn finds an ancient orbiting space habitat and the fun starts as they find a being that thinks it's God. The scale of the God/space habitat is immense and Varley does a great job of communicating how large it really is. The insane God Gaea ruins a great show and the books progress to making you believe things that are just not possible but Varley makes them seem all too reasonable. A great read.
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    A few of my favourites that I can highly recommend:

    • Ringworld - Larry Niven
    • Tau Zero - Poul Anderson
    • Flowers for Algernon - Daniel Keyes
    • Gateway - Frederik Pohl


    There are many more excellent books I could mention. I would advocate anything from this series - a friend introduced the series to me and I have since read most of the books several times. Asimov's Foundation saga is good too.
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    Hi all

    No one's mentioned Dan Simmons.

    For the really hard sci-fi lovers, try Ilium followed by Olympus.

    For the more epic sci-fi, but still technically excellent and innovative, there's his Hyperion Cantos quartet - Hyperion, Fall of Hyperion, Endymion, Rise of Endymion.

    Simmons is the guy who made me fall in love with sci-fi, even though some of it is so 'hard' that I didn't even understand it.
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  55. #54  
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    Try one of Jules Verne's books, I am myself reading 2000 leagues under the sea
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  56. #55  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spaceman
    Try one of Jules Verne's books, I am myself reading 2000 leagues under the sea
    Read that, and also:

    The Mysterious Island
    Journey to the center of the Earth
    From the Earth to the Moon
    Around the Moon (sequel to the previous book)
    "Men are apt to mistake the strength of their feelings for the strength of their argument.
    The heated mind resents the chill touch & relentless scrutiny of logic"-W.E. Gladstone


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  57. #56  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spaceman
    Try one of Jules Verne's books, I am myself reading 2000 leagues under the sea
    That must be the abridged version.
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    Sounds like a great book. Must have a lot of pictures.
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    If you like 'hard' science in your fiction, I'd have to recommend Dragon's Egg by Robert Forward. It describes the evolution of the Cheelia alien civilization, who live in the supergravity on the surface of a neutron star, and who evolve from primitive life to interstellar travel during the short time they are being observed and contacted by humans (accelerated time in a deep gravity well, see gen. relativity ).

    As for the discussion on the 1st page about Hawking radiation, it is nothing more than pair creation , and it happens all the time, has been experimentally observed, and there is no reason why it would not happen close to the event horizon of a black hole.
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    I am under shock.

    I know that Gene Wolfe is not as popular as Asimov but he is probably the best living scifi writer if not the best US writer.

    The Book of the New Sun is a must read for all scifi lovers. This series of 4 books is what all scifi and fantasy writers would like to achieve: an immersive world, it is rich, barocco, complex, you might get lost, the characters are deep, different from 90% of scifi books. You must read that. There are stories inside stories inside stories. It's beautiful.

    Once you finish Gene Wolfe, the rest will look greyish and dull.
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    Ive never read any of his novels, but I have read plenty of his short fiction, and I am not such a fan. He's way too science/fantasy and science/horror for me. I actually think he is pretty overrated (though I have heard such good things about his novels from people whose opinions I generally trust, that I admit, I may be speaking out of turn here).
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    I'd put anything by Vernor or Joan Vinge in my most liked. I like Lois Bujold's Vorkosigan series although there's nothing deep in them, just likeable characters and clever storytelling. Octavia Butler's Dawn series - one of the few authors who builds stories around losers and their compromises for survival rather than winners who rarely have to compromise anything, let alone their self respect, and this series gripped me. I'd echo a previous comment that it can be a disquieting read. Gifts of the Gorboduc Vandal by Paul O. Williams was a book that came my way by chance and that I thoroughly enjoyed.
    In the ambivalent catagory I'd put Larry Niven's stories; they can bring the astonishing to life in the imagination but are often so riddled with inconsistency that I'll only read them if I don't have to spend money to do so. The Integral Trees and The Smoke Ring were the last ones I did spend money on; did he submit them for publication as an April Fool prank? The stories didn't even happen in a 'smoke ring' world that bore any practical resemblance to the one he described. So internally inconsistent that it was those and seeing how many more I could find that kept me reading to the end. Read his stories once; going back tends gives too much opportunity to see what's wrong and tend to disappoint.
    Niven's regular co-author, Jerry Pournelle, is one I stopped reading after one of his Falkenberg stories that seemed to suggest mass murder as a practical way to deal with division and dissent. It could be seen as gritty realism but - and it could be my own politics showing - I'm always a bit dubious about the power of force to so easily force change for the better; looking back I thought his stories seemed contrived to create that outcome.
    For bad authors and stories, I better not start. I figure about one in ten of what I read was really worth the time; maybe one in a hundred turned out to be really gripping and worth retaining on my bookshelf.
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    Hi. My scifi books before are extensive but i gave most of them away. I kept a few that i will always treasure and they are:

    Asimov's books (if you are not a fan yet, try first his short stories like "i'm in marsport without hilda").

    the illustrated man by Bradbury.

    Sphere (personal choice, it is not Crichton's best).

    I'm looking now for good short stories, scifi is best in this format i think
    i am hoping,
    therefore maybe trying,
    to be happy,
    while i'm again dying.
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  64. #63  
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    I really liked Space, by James Michener.
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  65. #64 Re: Good sci-fi novels... 
    Forum Freshman tombyers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by william
    Hi everyone,
    I have read some sci-fi novels that I felt were really good, and I have read others where I felt it was a total waste of time.

    So I'm always on the lookout for good novels and on guard to stay away from losers.

    What are some that you would recommend?

    If you find yourself typing a long list, label which in that list are your absolute favorites.

    Thanks,
    wm
    The Foundation Series by Asimov and The Neanderthal Parallax by Sawyer
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    My favourite sf book would be The Night's Dawn trilogy from Peter F. Hamilton: The Reality Dysfunction, The Neutronium Alchemist and The Naked God.

    Although it is very long read and addmittedly, it does get a bit tedious in a few chapters, it is well worth reading.

    The technology behind space travel, star destroying weapons, living spaceships, mind transfer, body modifications and many other aspects of living in space is beautifully detailed and described.

    It has a superb and epic ending and excellent plot twists. Sometimes I couldn't stop reading it. But yeah...don't get into it if you don't like books with over 1000 pages.
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    The Manifold series by Stephen Baxter.
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    Im suprised more people havent mentioned Robert Heinlein. I saw it mentioned a couple times, but he was one of the best. He also wrote alot of short stories.

    His best novel, in my opinion would be "Stranger in a strange land". One of my all time favorite books.

    If you like time travel paradox stories, the best one I ever read was called "By his bootstraps" by Heinlein. It is a short story, and not so easy to find. Google it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Powell View Post
    The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton it's a pretty short book but it's really interesting.
    Yes, worth a read
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    Paul Preuss Breaking Strain, based on a short story by Asimov.
    It is by will alone I set my mind in motion.
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  72. #71  
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    May I suggest, Scott Westerfeld's "The Risen Empire" and it's follow up "The Killing of World's", truely fascinating storylines all packed to the rafters with science.

    The Risen Empire - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    The Killing of Worlds - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  73. #72  
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    I would have to place my Recommended Sci Fi more by Author than Title.

    Larry Niven - Almost Everything he has ever Written - The whole "Known Space" Series, including the Protector Novels, the Ringworld Novels, the Puppeteer Novels, the Kzinti Novels. The Leshy Circuit Series. The Barkeeper's Stories.
    The Integral Trees Series - and some of his other Short Stories. A few border on Fantasy - but still good.
    The 'Gil The ARM' Stories are more like Sci Fi Detective Fiction.
    Not to forget the 'Jumpshift' Stories - All The Bridges Rusting, The Last Days of The Permanent Floating Riot Club, The Alibi Machine - and others. They also fit into the 'Known Space' Series.

    E. E. 'Doc' Smith - The whole of the Lensmen Series. Also the 'Skylark' Series, although not so good.
    The Family D'Alembert Series are more like a kind of Sci Fi / Fantasy Detective Fiction.
    Three isolated Stories - The Masters of Space, The Galaxy Primes, ( can't remember the third ) feature more of Psionics and also Fantasy Politics.

    James Blish - the 'Cities In Flight' Series - They Shall Have Stars, A Life For The Stars, Earthman Come Home, A Clash Of Cymbals.
    Very interesting.

    Philip K Dick - The Dorsai Series - Monumental.

    Anne McCaffrey - The 'Crystal Singer' Series - Sci Fi. The 'Dragons' or 'Pern' Series - Sci Fi with many Fantasy type overtones.
    She is extremely good at developing believable characters - although with a feminine bias.

    Marion Zimmer Bradley - The 'Darkover' Series - much more Fantasy than Sci Fi - although it begins from a Sci Fi background.

    John Brunner - The Dramaturges of Yan - Sci Fi meets Fantasy - with a World Wide Intelligence which tries to do the impossible.
    If I wasn't so stupid - I might know what I was doing
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  74. #73  
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    "2001 a space odyssey" is much better than the movie. The movie spends most it's time on the special effect which for those days were great but boring now. The real story line from the very beginning is really very interesting. Knowing the whole story makes the second book "2010" even better. Clark did a good job of blending two story lines. One about artificial intelligence and one of an advanced civilization that seeds or manipulates differnt words in order to help advance them along. Including Earth
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  75. #74  
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    Roger Zelazny THE DREAM MASTER

    Charles Sheffield COLD AS ICE

    Ben Bova MARS

    Phillip K. Dick BLADE RUNNER

    William Gibson

    NANCY KRESS Sleepers series

    I wonder if Einstein was still alive who his favorite SF writers would be today.
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  76. #75  
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    Quote Originally Posted by william View Post
    ...What are some that you would recommend?
    Anything by Ben Bova.
    "Quando Omni Flunkus Moritati"
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  77. #76  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Janus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Spaceman
    Try one of Jules Verne's books, I am myself reading 2000 leagues under the sea
    Read that, and also:

    The Mysterious Island
    Journey to the center of the Earth
    From the Earth to the Moon
    Around the Moon (sequel to the previous book)
    Ditto. Also, Around the World in 80 Days. I read most of these before age 12.

    I could be strange, but I'd also say Watership Down by Richard Adams could be considered a science fiction novel due to it's acute sensitivity to rabbit psychology.

    More recently, I've enjoyed:

    William Gibson

    Burning Chrome (collected short stories)
    Neuromancer
    Count Zero
    Pattern Recognition
    Spook Country

    Philip K. Dick

    Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said
    A Scanner Darkly

    Neal Stephenson

    Cryptonomicon
    Snow Crash

    Also, I'm not sure what category Carlos Castaneda's books would fall under, but Journey to Ixtlan, Tales of Power and The Second Ring of Power were all interesting reads. Speculative fiction, I guess?
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  78. #77  
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    Great thread! Here's a selection from me:

    Planet of the Apes (Pierre Boulle)
    The City and the Stars (Arthur C Clarke) - his best novel IMO
    Ready Player One (Ernest Cline)
    The Penultimate Truth, The Simulacra, Dr Bloodmoney (PKD)
    Quarantine, Permutation City (Greg Egan)
    This Perfect Day (Ira Levin) - cf. Brave New World
    I Am Legend (Richard Matheson)
    The Mote in God's Eye (Niven and Pournelle)
    Last and First Men (Olaf Stapledon) - published in 1930!
    The Day of the Triffids (John Wyndham)
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    John Varley's Eight Worlds series: Steel Beach, The Golden Globe, The Ophiuchi Hotline, numerous short stories.
    Charles Stross' Singularity Sky and its sequel Iron Sunrise.
    Eric Flint, et al, the 1632 series.
    David Drake's Hammer's Slammers series
    Everything Lois Mcmaster Bujold has ever written

    Its interesting to me that so many of the previous replies mention the old masters Asimov, Clarke, Heinlein, E.E. Smith. I would have expected only old farts like me to have any interest in these guys. And I find it amusing Asimov is always referred to as a science fiction author when the man wrote 5 times as much non-fiction as fiction.
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  80. #79  
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    The Silkie: A E van Vogt. Dune, Frank Herbert. Excession, Ian Banks and my all time favorite: Idoru, William Gibson.
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    S.G. enlightened me to the fact that Herberts Dune is, in fact, a "remake" of the Muslim faith.

    I had never realized that...

    A bit like how DragonballZ was a "remake" of Journey To The West.
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    "The Cure", "Wired" or "Amped" All of them are excellent Science fiction thrillers written by Douglas E. Richards.
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    Most of the more well known dystopias or realistic 'end' scenarios

    1984
    Brave New World
    On the Beach
    Andromeda Strain

    Space stuff gets dated quickly. Some of my favourites when younger (Asimov, Heinlein, etc.) now seem naive because of the misinformation and wrong science.I like hard, hard science fiction...no cliche characters, no laser fights, no bypassing the laws of matter and energy. 2001 Space Odyssey fit the criteria but now we know the science is not realistic.
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  84. #83  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fossilborealis View Post
    Most of the more well known dystopias or realistic 'end' scenarios

    1984
    Brave New World
    On the Beach
    Andromeda Strain

    Space stuff gets dated quickly. Some of my favourites when younger (Asimov, Heinlein, etc.) now seem naive because of the misinformation and wrong science.I like hard, hard science fiction...no cliche characters, no laser fights, no bypassing the laws of matter and energy. 2001 Space Odyssey fit the criteria but now we know the science is not realistic.
    1984 would be my number one recommendation. LOVED that book so much!
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    Has anyone read Theodore Sturgeon's ''More Than Human''? It sounds quite awesome!
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  86. #85  
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    If I had to pick one chapter from a book it would be the first chapter of "Robopocalypse". The first chapter is called "Tip of the spear" and here is a link to the chapter. robocalypse tip of the spear. The whole thing takes place in about 15 minutes and so much happens. I would like to hear what others think about the subject.
    Last edited by bill alsept; November 24th, 2013 at 03:48 PM.
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  87. #86  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Karakris View Post
    Philip K Dick - The Dorsai Series - Monumental.
    Er, Gordon Dickson, surely.
    "[Dywyddyr] makes a grumpy bastard like me seem like a happy go lucky scamp" - PhDemon
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    I wouldn't consider it completely unfair to characterize Dan Brown's latest book, 'Origin', as science fiction, although it should be noted it's also surely also a great adventure novel & indeed crime thriller as well. Another book sure to erk the more religiously inclined amongst us, though perhaps not quite on the same level as the Da Vinci Code for its ability to cause controversy. Professor Langdon is once again the protagonist on a quest to solve a mystery, this time of somewhat epic proportions! I would certainly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys fiction!
    Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it. - confucius
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    Dan Simmons: Hyperion, Endymion
    Asimov:the Foundation
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